Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine

August 14 - November 29, 2020


Book timed-entry tickets

Hope Wanted takes place outdoors in New-York Historical’s rear courtyard (entrance by 5 West 76th Street between Central Park West and Columbus Avenue), providing an open-air environment for visitors to view the exhibition and contemplate the impact of COVID-19 on New York City. Admission is free; access is limited and face coverings are required for entry, with social distancing enforced through timed-entry tickets and on-site safety measures.

Curated by poet and journalist Kevin Powell and photographer Kay Hickman, Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine features more than 50 photographs taken by Hickman along with 14 audio interviews with the photographs’ subjects conducted by Powell during the team’s intensive two-day odyssey across the city on April 8–9, 2020; the audio will be accessible to visitors through their cell phones. Hickman’s empathetic photographs of people and their neighborhoods in all five boroughs and Powell’s searching interviews of New Yorkers impacted by the crisis capture both tragedy and remarkable resilience at a moment in time during the pandemic. The exhibition text and audio will be offered in both English and Spanish.

The exhibition also includes a quiet seating area, surrounded by plantings and conducive to reflection, where visitors can record their own experiences of the pandemic in an open-sided story booth. These oral histories will be archived by New-York Historical.

Check out recent coverage of the exhibition in the New York Times and on NY1.

Shop the Hope Wanted collection at the NYHistory Store.


Monday – Thursday
Friday (Members, age 65+, and immunocompromised only) 10 am – 11 am
Friday 11 am – 8 pm
Saturday – Sunday 11 am – 5 pm


Is there an admission charge?
The exhibition is free, with major support provided by the Ford Foundation. 

How do I get tickets?
We strongly recommend booking your timed-entry ticket online in advance. Capacity is limited to facilitate social distancing.

I am a Member. Do I need a ticket?
Yes. Since capacity is limited, we strongly recommend that Members book their tickets in advance. Please email us at membership@nyhistory.org with any questions. Thank you for your support, and for helping us to create a safe exhibition space.

Are bags permitted in the exhibition?
Small bags and backpacks are allowed. Large bags are not permitted, and there is no coat check.

What are the safety protocols?
Face masks are required for employees and all visitors older than age 2 and are available—without charge—to anyone requesting them. Social distancing is required and will be enforced, and there is a one-way path through the exhibition. Cleaning protocols are also in place.

Is the exhibition accessible?
Yes, the space is ADA compliant. 

Will restrooms be available?
Yes, the courtyard has portable restrooms. 

What happens if a visitor refuses to wear a face mask or comply with safety guidelines?
We reserve the right to refuse entry to anyone who declines to wear a face mask or comply with guidelines.

Will the exhibition stay open if it rains? 
Yes, Hope Wanted is open rain or shine!

Major support for this exhibition provided by the Ford Foundation.

Birch trees are generously donated by NorthEast Properties.

Exhibitions at New-York Historical are made possible by Dr. Agnes Hsu-Tang and Oscar Tang, the Saunders Trust for American History, the Seymour Neuman Endowed Fund, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. WNET is the media sponsor.



Media sponsor:

Creative: Tronvig Group